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The Power of the Corporation

Last week, Vail announced they were donating $1.3 million in community grants to 30 non-profit organizations in Summit and Wasatch Counties. These monies will go to organizations like the Peace House, Recycle Utah, and Summit Land Conservancy. You really can’t argue with it or the fact that they doubled the amount versus the previous year. It’s “Free Money” that will benefit our community in so many ways.

A week earlier, Park City residents came together for Live PC Give PC. $1 million was raised for local charities. This was a huge increase over the $800,000 raised the year before.

All combined this is over $2.3 in money and time given back to our community. That is great!

However, we are struck by the power of the corporation. Live PC Give PC is a huge community endeavor; it’s like the whole town raises up and its life force is propelled into giving. There is power in that. Yet it appears there is more power in a corporation writing a check. With the wave of the pen Vail can assign $1.3 million of it’s $37 million dollar profit where it likes. Perhaps we’re jaded by this Vail Business Journal Article about Epic Promise which says, “Employees will have completed [projects] to commemorate Vail Resorts’ newly launched EpicPromise, a branding platform designed to engage resort guests and residents of the communities where is operates in one of the company’s core values, Do Good.” So Live PC Give PC is about charities and EpicPromise is about a … branding platform.

It’s like comparing two kids… one who buys baseball card packs hoping to find the player he loves in one of those packs and the other who’s dad buys the whole year’s set of cards. They’ll probably both eventually get the player’s card they wanted, but one way just seems better than the other.

We don’t know what the alternative is and would we really want to turn down money for non-profits? It’s tough.

Do we harbor any ill will toward Vail? I guess not. Does the whole giving thing seem more like just a transaction. Yes.

Welcome to the new normal.




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